Don't like the adverts?  Click here to remove them

Troopy side window replacement


New Member
Sep 14, 2018
Country Flag
So... I looked everywhere on the internet and found scant advice regarding replacing the rubber runs for the side windows on my HZJ 78. There was one good thread at exploreoz but this was written in 1990 it appears. Nonetheless it was my only resource when it came to replacing my dried up and worn out rubber runners and was very useful. It also lulled me into sense of complacency. It really wasn’t that easy. So following are my tips and tricks for executing this job.
My first piece of advice would be; avoid this job at all costs. If your windows are working ok, and you don’t have a massive ingress of dust, it’s not worth the ball ache. But if you really must...
Firstly remove the rubber molding trim from the interior circling the window. Congratulations, you just completed the only easy part of the process.
This moulding is in fact the main mechanical component affixing the window assembly to the body of the vehicle, and it pays to be aware of that fact. In addition, there are four metal clips that sandwich the window sash to the body. Remove these and put them somewhere safe. The bottom ones likely are corroded somewhat, so you could replace them if you had the energy to order new ones.
Now the only thing from preventing the wind sash separating from the body is a strip of butyl sealant. Now it may not be the same in every vehicle, but in mine this was a really thick, strong bead. And so it was extremely difficult pulling the first window assembly off. But I leant a lot from that first one, and so the remaining three were much easier. Let me fill you in...
Firstly, DO NOT use Petrol or brake cleaner or any other agent to break down the butyl mastic sealant. It will make a terrible mess all over the interior and exterior of your vehicle. It may soften that shit up but it also makes nigh impossible to remove it properly. Instead insert a screwdriver or even better a small plastic scraper between the body metal and the sash. Gently work it, avoiding scratching any paint work or making impressions. You just need to get a bit of a gap going, keep working that sealant with your tool of choice so you can insert your secret weapon- which is, a concrete trowel! A concreting trowel will distribute the force much better than a screwdriver, and has a nice gooseneck on it to get a good purchase angle. You can really start to separate the butyl mastic sealant with this method. At this point you should definitely have a trusty assistant on the out side of the vehicle to catch the window assembly if it does to decide to fall. I didn’t have one but I did have the foresight to attach a glaziers suction cup to the window panes then tethered up to my roof rack for safety. You need to work the concreting trowel enough to really separate the sealant, and make a big enough gap that you can get some fingers through. Once that is achieved, go to the outside of the vehicle, slip your fingers through and you can really apply some power and pull the sash off the body. It’s a hell of a fight but slow and steady wins the race.
So great! You’ve got the first sash/window assembly off. Only 3 more to go...
Run a petrol soaked rag around the window cavity to remove any of the old sealant.
Next is a rather difficult process of stretching the sash enough to be able to pull out the glass panes. It takes rather a lot of effort to do manually, and you will need someone to assist you to handle the glass. Though I achieved this manually on the first one there was no way I was going to do this 8x taking out plus 8x putting glass back in. You would kill yourself, either involuntarily or voluntarily. A better solution for me was to slide the two panes into the center of the sash, tether the upper two corners with a ratchet strap or strop to something solid, and then use mechanical means to pull the two bottom corners out. In my case I am lucky enough to have a milling machine, so the milling table was perfect for this operation. But you could use a vise connected to two strops, or even a high lift jack to gain a mechanical advantage to open that sash frame up. Once you have stretched it enough you will be able to extract a pane. So the next step in the process is to remove the aluminum vertical dust strip in the middle of the assembly, which you can’t actually do until one glass pane is removed. Firstly you must remove a small philips head screw on the top side of the sash, and put it somewhere safe :) Then turn the sash over, repeat the stretching process and extract the other pane. Label all panes and sash’s with a marker so you don’t get confused reassembling later. Again, run a rag round the sash frame to remove any old sealant. If there is a lot of old sealant there, I found it better to manually pick it off, roll it into a ball, and use its tackiness to ‘snowball’ the rest of it off. That was a good trick I discovered too late...
Now remove the old rubber runner, clean up the sash with a bit of soap and water (it will be very dirty along the bottom), and slip the new rubber in. It’s not a great fit at first but once the glass is back in it will tidy itself up.
Now is a good time to reinstall the vertical dust strip, taking care to nest nicely in the sash, through the holes in your new rubber runner. Reinstall the philips head screw.
Back to your sash stretching device, open the sash frame up, slip in a pane of glass, turn it round, and install the second pane. Quite a lengthy process as you have to massage the new runner a bit to ensure it doesn’t get pinched or anything. You may have to trim a bit of excess rubber off as they don’t seem to be the exact circumference as the window sash, but do that last just in case!
Repeat the above process 3 more times :)
Run a new bead of butyl mastic sealant (or any other caulking agent I suppose) around the exterior body window cavity and stick the window assembly on. Replace the four metal clips from the inside and then the plastic moulding.
Repeat 3x.

Fun huh?